No Parking at the End Times

By Bryan Bliss
Published on February 24th 2015
Published by Greenwillow Books
Abigail’s parents have made mistake after mistake, and now they've lost everything. She’s left to decide: Does she still believe in them? Or is it time to believe in herself? Fans of Sara Zarr, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell will connect with this moving debut.

Abigail doesn't know how her dad found Brother John. Maybe it was the billboards. Or the radio. What she does know is that he never should have made that first donation. Or the next, or the next. Her parents shouldn't have sold their house. Or packed Abigail and her twin brother, Aaron, into their old van to drive across the country to San Francisco, to be there with Brother John for the "end of the world." Because of course the end didn't come. And now they're living in their van. And Aaron’s disappearing to who-knows-where every night. Their family is falling apart. All Abigail wants is to hold them together, to get them back to the place where things were right. But maybe it’s too big a task for one teenage girl. Bryan Bliss’s thoughtful, literary debut novel is about losing everything—and about what you will do for the people you love.

I think that No Parking at the End Times is truly an unconventional book right from the beginning. But, that is not to say that the book was fantastic. Bliss writes about Abigail, a teenage girl, whose family has sold all of their belongings in preparation for the “end times” that they believe are quickly approaching; but never happens. Now Abigail and her twin brother, Aaron, are starting to doubt their religion and their belief in God altogether.

The characters were mediocre. I only enjoyed how he described Abigail and Aaron’s close relationship and the love they had for each other. Their parents, Dale and Kat, were odd to me (looking past them being in a cult kind of odd). They were very surface- y, almost like they had no personality at all. That may have been Bliss’s goal, to make them seem distant, and if so, well done. Overall though, I feel as though he could have gone more in depth with each character because it would have made me feel more connected as a reader and really care or even want to finish the book. 

Overall, I thought the plot line was fairly decent and the characters were interesting, but he could have done so much more with it. That is was disappointed me the most (along with the predictable ending). That being said, I did not hate it. I just didn’t love it. I would say just rent this from your local library instead of buying it.

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